Program: 2021

E.A.T. x Paris: Longue Durée

Centre Culturel Suisse, Paris, 21. October 2021

E.A.T. x Paris

Denise Bertschi, Heonik Kwon, Adeena Mey


2021 E.A.T. x Paris Longue Durée


E.A.T and CCS.Paris


as part of the LONGUE DURÉE series

Denise Bertschi


Heonik Kwon
(Talks will be held in English )

Thursday 21 October, 6.00 pm


As part of her exhibition Oasis of Peace. Neutral Only On The Outside at Centre culturel suisse, the artist Denise Bertschi talks with Heonik Kwon (Senior Research Fellow in Social Anthropology at Trinity College, University of Cambridge). For her exhibition, Bertschi’s research focused on the demilitarized zone (DMZ) between North and South Korea, the Swiss „neutral” military mission and the images produced by them in this area. In his writings, Heonik Kwon proposes a new perspective on the Corean war as a “hot” rather than a “cold” war, and introduces a post-colonial reading of this global conflict. How can the role of Switzerland as a “neutral peace-keeper” be revisited along this interpretation? And how does the notion of “longue durée” link in with this specific historical and geograhical context? Moderation by researcher and curator Adeena Mey (Central Saint Martins).


This talk is part of the “Longue durée” program of Engadin Art Talks. “Longue Durée” literally means “long duration”. It is a view of history first introduced by the French historian Fernand Braudel. Braudel’s “Longue Durée” allows us to interpret crises as opportunities for fundamental structural change. Art is one mean by which we can reimagine existing paradigms to accommodate new discoveries and create new realities.


Denise Bertschi uses the term of “longue-durée” in her essay STATE FICTION The Gaze of The Swiss Neutral Mission in the Korean Demilitarized Zone : “Even if Switzerland has an ongoing history of Swiss military labour by colonial mercenaries in Southeast Asia, who fought for the Dutch colonial warfare in the 19th century and up to the first world war, it was always Swiss individuals who joined foreign armies […] Thus, the Swiss Neutral military mission in Korea can be read into a longue-durée lineage of Swiss men, as mercenaries or neutral soldiers, incorporated in different forms of military forces in East Asia.”


Centre Culturel Suisse.Paris
38 rue des Francs-Bourgeois
75003 Paris


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